Sailing on the Rhine through the most gorgeous part of this mighty river floating down as we sail upstream. It’s the heart of the Rhine and its villages that go back to the Middle Ages. History, great views, castles and a meandering river, it’s all here for us to bike along. Father Rhine, the greatest waterway in the world. Much more than a shipping highway, the river is the pulsing economic vein of Germany and Europe. Around every bend, legends spring to life…the plunging Lorelei cliffs, deadly Bingen Reef, the fabled site where Rheingold is buried…to name a few ancient places that touch our souls and connect us with great literature, music and history. Then at Mainz we enter the Main River, here we definitely entering into the Franconian region, with great historic villages and worldfamous cities like Frankfurt. Once almost the capital of Germany. Now full of museums and a “Mainhattan” skyline. Discover the lovely Aschaffenburg at the end of this trip. This tour in the heart of Germany is certainly giving you an excellent impression of this great country. Travel through it’s history!
Biking is easygoing on paved bike paths most of the time. It’s always safe as we avoid traffic and you are guided. If you do not feel like biking you can stay on board and enjoy a day of sailing. Our guides stop regularly and take you to the highlights on the daily tour.Read more
Today you join the IRIS, docked in Cochem and enjoy the day in this typical Moselle&Wine village. The guide will take you on a walk to the Burg (Castle) to have a guide tour there!
Moselle, visit of Burg Eltz, cycling about 25 miles/ walking about 1,8 miles
Our first ride will be along the river on the Moselle bike path. We will visit Burg Eltz today!. Part of it walking, as it is well hidden in the hills. This Castle is different from any other castle. It remained unscathed by wars. It has been owned and cared for by the same family from when it was built until today. Its architecture has no comparison and many of the original furnishings of the past eight centuries still remain in place. There is a Treasury and Armoury boasting world-class artworks in gold and silver. It towers high on a large rock, but is still in a valley. So you understand: we have to go there! After this great visite we will bike back to the barge, which will offer us an afternoon cruise to Koblenz were we will dock for the night.
Koblenz has a beautiful “Altstadt” (old city) in the triangle between the Mosel and the Rhine River.
Koblenz - St Goar 25 ml
After breakfast, the bike ride first takes you to the ancient city Boppard. Here the Rhine takes an amazing turn, nearly 180 degrees. Boppard has always been a visitors magnet with her precipitous vineyards, one of the nicest bank promenades on the Middle Rhine, and the oldest preserved Roman fort walls to the north of the Alps. You can get up the hill with a chairlift ride!
Your destination is St. Goar, opposite the famous Loreley. A ferry and a bus bring you up to the Loreley. A hiking path leads up to this lovely spot and offers a beautiful sight of the narrowest part of the romantic Rhine Valley.
The first traces of human settlement have been apparent from when the Loreley Plateau was level with the Rhine (600.000 years ago). During the Middle Ages, the Loreley, along with the Binger Loch, was well known as the most dangerous section of the Rhine. Many mariners in their wooden dinghies came to tragedy here. In St. Goar, directly opposite the Loreley, Saint Goar settled to save shipwrecked mariners and nurse them back to health.
St. Goar - Ruedesheim, start cycling at Oberwesel 14 ml, from St. Goar 20 ml
Our morning can start with a great sail along the Lorelei. Lights show us if ships are coming down while our boat sails upstream.
We join the bike path again, pass by pompous castles, and reach Ruedesheim. The Romans already planted their vines here! Stroll through the “Drosselgasse”, famous for its entertaining music and taste some of the wines of this wine village. This tiny old “gasse” is only 144 meters long and has 37.508 paving stones. Visit the Asbach centre, home of Germans Brandy produced locally since 1892. Are you not into brandy? They make some great chocolate as well.
The old town, dating from the Middle Ages, and parts of the city’s fortifications like the Adlerturm (eagle tower) are maintained. Here you will find cosy traditional wine taverns in historic half-timbered houses.
Ruedesheim - Mainz 22 ml or more
The beautiful stage leads through rolling vineyards and well-known wine villages. The Rhine flows unhurriedly, forming little islands and broadening its bed up to 800 m width! Our destination is Mainz, where the Main River meets the Rhine.
In the afternoon, there will be time to explore this exciting city. Mainz’s inner city is its pride and joy, filled with spacious plazas, lovingly restored -timbered houses and magnificent Baroque-style churches. The ‘Old Town’ has a very charming and warm atmosphere.
Mainz - Frankfurt am Main 40 k / 25 ml
We now cycle on the cyclepaths along the Main River to Frankfurt, one of Germany’s largest cities and home to the Frankfurter Messe (Fair), home to fairs since 1240! A Trade-City, home to Banks and Stockmarkets. The city skyline is very contemperary due to these developments and also because of the destruction in the second World War.
Now Frankfurt is home to a many museums located at a special area at the riverside and famous for its annual Buchmesse (Book Fair).
Frankfurt am Main - Aschaffenburg 55 k / 35 ml.
Today’s bike tour leads first to the small and romantic city of Seligenstadt with its windings alleys, wood framed houses, and basilica. After that we cross the Main on a small ferry and we continue through Hanau the town where the famous Grimm Brothers were born. You will find the barge again in Aschaffenburg, with the Johannisburg Palace, located on the banks of the Main River. This castle will be the first thing you see as you enter Aschaffenburg as it is the grandest of all Renaissance palace complexes
Time to say goodbye, your guided tour ends after breakfast. You can leave your luggage on board untill lunchtime, and visit Aschaffenburg a bit more
Premium Barge IRIS
One of the best: our comfort plus barge IRIS, sailing since 2005. Fully air-conditioned, lovely front sundeck, lounge and dining-area and selfservice Bar. Delicious 3 course dinners and packed lunches. Lots of options at Breakfast.
Sail through the day, rest at night in our new cabins!
Our ship only sails during the day, at night we are docked and you can go for evening strolls, or enjoy the frontdeck or lounge. No bike-fever: you are always welcome to cruise along with us
Cabin can be separate beds or beds put together!
Your private spot for the week has two beds and a bathroom with a toilet & shower. You decide if you want to have separate beds or beds put together!
our new bathroom!
Hard to capture in a picture, but our new bathrooms are very nice!
After a long day of cycling, it’s always great to relax and have a drink in our lounge
What’s Included on the Bike&Barge tour:
- 7 nights onboard
- Bed linen and towels
- 5 x 3-course dinner on board
- a glass of wine/beer at dinner
- Packed lunches for bike trips
- Coffee and tea on board
- Tour guide (from 18 guests two guides)
- Guided Tour at Burg Eltz
- Cabins cleaned daily
- Climate-controlled cabins
- Helmets, panniers and waterbottle
What’s Not included:
- Bike rental € 100,– per bike (2023)
- E-bike on availability, € 210,– per E-bike (2023)
- Entrance fees for museums, monuments, on your own
- Travel and cancellation insurance
- Miscellaneous beverages and expenses on excursions.
- Gratuities for Staff and Guides
E-bikes on request & availability € 210,– per bike (2023)